Paper Dolls

When I was little, I would entertain myself making paper dolls. I’d make them out of anything I could get my hands on, comic books, newspaper ads, magazines, I would cut out things that caught my eye. I had a file full of women, men, animals, tools, dishes, and sheets straight out of catalogs of fully or partially decorated rooms. Rainy afternoons or winter evenings, I would set up a TV tray, pick a setting from my room collection, and start to assemble a scene to play with. Turns out, I still play with paper dolls.

When you want to make a full scale model of something, you need a cheap and easy material to work with that can handle some abuse. Thanks to the lovely people at SCRAP, I found just the thing. SCRAP winds up getting all the signage from conferences at Moscone (and probably other places I’m not aware of). That means they are usually swimming in sheets upon sheets of foamcore. Not just any foamcore, either. The stuff they have is 1/2 inch thick, and surfaced with a thin plastic. This stuff is meant for holding up to being stumbled into and knocked down. Perfect for cutting and pinning together with 8 penny nails. We taped together some larger sheets and cut out the side profile, then cut the pieces for the shelves, counters, and cabinets. Today, we pieced them together. The plastic coating has a satisfying snap and the 8 penny nails make a nice squeaking sound as you punch through. All the horizontals are placed, so the next step is to grab the mattress out of the current trailer, throw it in the mockup, and see how it feels spacewise. At this point, we can decide on things like “Do we want to modify the headboard or scrap it completely?” “Should we lower the cabinets?” “Will a shoe and blanket shelf fit in the footwell?” Since it’s just foamcore and nails, we can pull the nails and move things where we want, and compare how the different placements feel.


For now, however, we found the balance point, and suspended it from a hanging bike rack in our loft. This way, we’re not walking into and/or around it all the time, but we can still pull it down to work with it. We still want to do things like determine cooler tray placement, stove rack, dish storage, food and water storage, and the like. (yay, using paper dolls to figure out fiddly details ahead of time!)


Next up are a few camping trips. I’ll go into prep for those here a little later on to share and enjoy!